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Radio Days

  • By Mark Gordon
  • | 9:06 a.m. June 10, 2011
  • | 2 Free Articles Remaining!
  • Entrepreneurs
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While lots of people have opinions on how investors can make or lose gobs of money in the stock market, few can access their own hour-long daily radio show.
Sarasota resident Phil Grande has both.

On the opinion side, Grande's surname is apropos. His beliefs are bold, from how he considers 401(k)s a fraud to why he believes his proprietary charting software is the best bet for investors who seek solid stock market returns.

On the radio side, Grande's syndicated show, Phil's Gang, is broadcast daily in more than 100 markets, from Tampa and Sarasota to San Francisco and Seattle. On the Gulf Coast, the show can be heard from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. on 860 WGUL AM in Tampa and 930 WLSS AM in Sarasota. (The Business Review broadcasts a weekly business news update on WGUL and WLSS.)

The show has been on the air for 12 years, but has been on smaller stations on the Gulf Coast until the last few years. Grande says the show's ratings have increased steadily, even recently beating Sean Hannity in one California market.

But Grande isn't merely a talking head.

Grande and his business partner and wife, Marta Grande, have turned his opinions and his radio show into a thriving stock market research business. Phil's Gang members pay $39.95 a month for access to Grande's charting software and stock-trading advice.

“It's not for everybody,” Grande says. “You have to be very disciplined and patient.”

There is growth in the gang. Membership has increased from 850 monthly members in 2007 to more than 4,000 this year, says Marta Grande. The company declines to release annual revenues, but with memberships that cost nearly $500 a year, the business certainly does well.

Grande's stock market philosophy and software charts who buys a stock, instead of a company's fundamentals. “Our business is based on following the money,” says Grande.

For example, Grande says if Coca-Cola opens an office in China, he is only concerned about what institutional investors do with that information, not what Wall Street analysts say about it. The software tracks those moves with simple code words, says Marta Grande, which is better than the jargon often found in Wall Street-generated reports.

“Those were put out there to confuse people, to make you think you need a broker,” says Marta Grande. “But you don't.”

Phil Grande hammers that message everyday on his radio show. He also pounds away on several other messages, including what he calls the 401(k) scam set up by fee-dominated brokers to control client's money. “You can't make money of a 401K,” says Grande. “It has always been a fraud.”

Another key message: Grande asks clients to donate a portion of any stock market gains to a children's cancer-based charity, such as St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. Grande's son, now grown, is a child cancer survivor.

A South Dakota native, Grande initially was in the oil business and owned several successful companies, including one that helped turn around failing oil operations. That's where Grande developed a passion for teaching others how to improve their financial well-being. Says Grande: “I will make sure you are a better trader and a better investor.” 


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